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November 01, 2008

My Everyday Encounter With "Real America"

Blogging has continued to be on the low-priority list as of late. Which is weird, considering how strongly I feel about this election. My house is in a 24-hour election news cycle. What time is it? Is it time for Olbermann yet? Is Maddow on? Dammit - there's only the Crypt Keeper Larry King.

I find myself cringing at work, where people let it slip that they don't know who they plan to vote for "for anything" as though it's just another election like one of many we tend to have here in Washington. Sometimes I get especially annoyed, like when I'm trapped in the car on the way to the bank with a couple of folks I would rather talk about anything than politics. A conversation with some of these"Real Americans":

"You can't trust either of them. They're both crooks!" starts in one.

"I just wish the black one would talk about what he's gonna do 'stead of what he's not gonna do. I mean - he's always attacking McCain. And that guy's an American hero!" replies the other.

"You know why he does that...'cause he hangs out with all those terrorists and stuff. He knows if he talks about that he'll lose."

"Um," I finally interject, "Actually Obama has talked a lot about what he plans to do. If you watched any of the debates he spoke about his tax plan and lowering taxes for anyone making less than $200K a year and providing health care for people who can't afford it through their employers."

"Yeah, but lots of presidents have said they're gonna do that stuff and they never do." is the response.

"Yes, but if you don't vote him into office and give him the opportunity, it will certainly never happen. And McCain isn't offering those things at all. And I don't think any president has ever offered a health care plan like this." I persist.

"Uh-huh, Clinton did. And it failed. It didn't work. It's never gonna happen."

"That was Hillary Clinton that tried to pass Universal Health Care, which is a little different. She was the First Lady. Not the President." I rally on.

"Still, I don't like how the World loves Obama. They're scared of McCain. Hopefully they'll just leave us alone, and we'll leave them alone. That's the way it should be."

"Exactly!" Her compatriot agrees.

"Got it. Unfortunately, we are involved in a couple of wars oversees, and we are part of the World, our economy is tied to a number of countries, and a number of other countries economies are tied to ours, so just cutting ourselves off from everyone else isn't really an option. We have to participate for a lot of reasons."

At this point, we had reached our destination, and I exited the vehicle. I felt as thought I had done what I could to share my point of view, although I doubt it had changed any minds. I'm sure once I was gone the conversation consisted of the two of them rolling their eyes and laughing at my educated voter naivete.

Posted by Ensie at November 1, 2008 08:35 PM

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